mount ext2 Virtual Hard Drive on windows

Gigabyte / M61pme-s2p
February 2, 2011 at 10:25:23
Specs: Windows XP, 2.712 GHz / 1983 MB
I need to mount a Linux EXT2 Virtual Hard Drive Volume inside of windows XP so I can read and copy files from it into windows with out having to use Virtual PC 2007, I have WinMount3 it'll mount my other FAT formatted *.VHD's Virtual Hard Disk but not for a EXT2 one.

I have tried using, all of the below programs none of them allow me to view or access the files inside my VHD ext2 files..

I don't know what to do I need to read the files in windows I don't want to write anything back to the VHD I just need to be able to read it..

Note: I am using the *.VHD Virtual Hard Disk format that is for Virtual PC 2007 that are stored on my hard drive as Files with the extension VHD..

What ever you do don't try that Virtual Volumes program from the second link, it say's you should have a complete back up of you system first and it isn't lying. I just had to do system restore it made two my hard drives inaccessible. I got them back and didn't lose my files but that was a close shave..

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February 2, 2011 at 14:26:48
I'd use qemu maybe under windows. No install needed. If you want easy then qemu manager. Use that image directly or may have to convert but I think it would work.

Second easy way may be to use a live cd or live usb to some linux. Many newer distros may support that but if need be install virtualbox or qemu.

"The era of big government is over," said Clinton 1996

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February 2, 2011 at 14:33:54
Silly question, but why not just install Virtual PC? It's a free download. Or you could use VirtualBox which also supports .vhd files. And you can transfer files from the guest OS to the host if required.

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February 3, 2011 at 11:07:40
Silly question, yep and I thought of a easy way using Virtual PC, just Install the ext2 driver from in an XP or windows virtual Machine because it would recognize your VHD file as a Hard Drive and not just a file when loaded in there. And you can copy anything you need over to the XP Drive there go back to the host and mount the XP Normal windows Partitioned VHD and there you go.. Files Exchanged.

Most Linux Versions that install in Virtual PC don't or rather it is complicated to setup Virtual Machine Addictions on, and with out that installed it is impossible to copy files back to the host from inside the Virtual Machine so it's better if you can access the drive in a Windows Virtual Machine.

Apparently the VHD I have isn't a Linux Partition either all though it is when I boot Linux on it in Virtual PC a Windows VM will recognize it with the driver but still say's it isn't formatted and won't read it as an EXT2 drive.

I don't understand why somebody can't make a program that reads them in Windows without using a driver it is like a disk drive and not really a hard drive it just acts as one inside a VM. Besides that it isn't a hard drive at all it is actually just a file..

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February 3, 2011 at 12:33:11
I don't mean to be rude or nothing I just thought maybe there was an easier way, I Appreciate any help I can get, I'll try using VMware it does support Linux better than Virtual PC does. I can copy stuff from inside the Linux VM on to a DOS Format Floppy Disk. It's Linux Minislack 1.1 the modern version is called ZENWALK. But zenwalk doesn't work in Virtual PC. It's an really old version of Linux but is the one I use most the time, because it is simple to use compared to more modern ones.

Thanks for the suggestions. Best Regards.

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February 3, 2011 at 14:28:55
Use VirtualBox. It handles Linux just fine and it's easy to map shared folders between the host and the guest OS. VMWare Player is pretty good too, but not quite as good as VirtualBox in my experience.

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February 10, 2011 at 08:00:05
Thanks I'll give that a try I used to use Virtual Box but it has been a long time ago, The whole Virtual Machine additions is another thing that turns people against Microsoft.

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